We examined interethnic differences in the prevalence of neuroimaging markers of cerebrovascular and neurodegenerative disease in 3 major Asian ethnicities (Chinese, Malays, and Indians), as well as their role in cognitive impairment. 3T MRI brain scans were acquired from 792 subjects (mean age: 70.0 ± 6.5years, 52.1% women) in the multi-ethnic Epidemiology of Dementia In Singapore study. Markers of cerebrovascular disease and neurodegeneration were identified. Cognitive performance was evaluated using Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE), Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA), and a neuropsychological assessment. Compared to Chinese, Malays had a higher burden of intracranial stenosis (OR: 2.28. 95%CI: 1.23-4.20) and cortical atrophy (β: -0.60. 95%CI: -0.78, -0.41), while Indians had a higher burden of subcortical atrophy (β: -0.23. 95%CI: -0.40, -0.06). Moreover, Malay and Indian ethnicities were likely to be cognitively impaired (OR for Malays: 3.79. 95%CI: 2.29-6.26; OR for Indians: 2.87. 95%CI: 1.74-4.74) and showed worse performance in global cognition (β for Malays: -0.51. 95%CI: -0.66, -0.37; and Indians: -0.32. 95%CI: -0.47, -0.17). A higher burden of cerebrovascular and neurodegenerative markers were found in Malays and Indians when compared to Chinese. Further research is required to fully elucidate the factors and pathways that contribute to these observed differences.

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Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-59618-8, hdl.handle.net/1765/124845
Journal Scientific Reports
Citation
Wong, L.C.K. (Louis Choon Kit), Wong, M.Y.Z. (Mark Yu Zheng), Tan, C.S. (Chuen Seng), Vrooman, H.A, Venketasubramanian, N, Cheng, C.-Y. (Ching-Yu), … Hilal, S. (2020). Interethnic differences in neuroimaging markers and cognition in Asians, a population-based study. Scientific Reports, 10(1). doi:10.1038/s41598-020-59618-8